Buffalo - February 27, 2015 - Following every Sabres game, we’ll be taking a little look at the previous night’s action with a little segment called “good, bad and ugly”. Expect a loooooooot of ugly.
What’s going on here? The Sabres have won their second in a row, a 6(!!!)-3 win over the Vancouver Canucks. Let’s get into it.
I keep having to have this internal argument about Chris Stewart. My heart looks at how he’s been playing of late – he’s scored in back-to-back games and has generally looked better since the turn of the New Year – and wonders if there’s a way the Sabres could keep him and where he could potentially fit with this team going forward.
Then my brain gets into the mix and calls my heart an idiot. It tells my heart that he’s notorious for his spotty effort, that he’s got 30-goal potential but might not ever get there because he can’t seem to stay motivated for long enough. “He’s only good for stretches at a time, then he disappears,” my brain says.
Either way, Stewart can be impactful when he wants to be and it’s been nice to see him wanting to be just that. Hopefully, he’s raised his stock enough to not only find a better home, but to bring back a few nice pieces for Tim Murray’s war chest.
Y U NO LIKE LEADS?
The Sabres in general have not been fans of holding leads this year and decided to blow a pair of them before putting the final bullet into the Canucks. They held a 1-0 lead for all of 1:02 before the Canucks tied it in the first period and then just 2:41 in the third period before Torey Mitchell’s second of the night put the game on ice.
Ultimately, yeah, blow all the leads because this is the year to do it, but I hope this is just a bad team being bad. Like, when all the young talent arrives next season, I don’t want them to be blowing leads left and right because that sort of thing can get into your head and I want nothing but sunshine and rainbows in the heads of all these youngsters.
You got lucky this time, Sabres, but Torrey Mitchell isn’t gonna be there to bail you out all the time. I just re-read that sentence four times and determined that can perfectly sum up why the Sabres are where they are in the standings.
I keep trying to tell myself that I’m not going to be that guy. You know that guy. When the Sabres win a game, the tank is over and the franchise is doomed for the next decade because they’ve just played themselves out of a top pick.
I’m not going to go full-on “that guy”, but it’s hard to not think about the fact that the lottery is a fickle mistress. Nothing is guaranteed unless you finish dead-last. Getting Jack Eichel as a consolation prize makes the sting of losing the McJesus lottery hurt a helluva lot less. But when that guarantee is removed and the Sabres are at the mercy of the ping pong balls? Sphincters clench. And they clench tightly.
One of the worst things about being a fan of perpetually bad teams is that you’re always waiting for the other shoe to drop. And finishing anywhere but last means we’re all going to be waiting for that shoe – or a ping pong ball – to drop. For the sake of my sphincter and those like mine, I need the Sabres to finish last.
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